Midcounties Co-op has today introduced a series of changes to how it engages and rewards its members, and operates its community impact programme.
A new members-only offers programme has been launched across the society’s businesses, allowing members to save more on products ranging from cupboard essentials to holidays and broadband contracts.
The new offers will mean that every member could save at least £150 per year on food alone, says the society, which is also creating a new Community Impact Fund to increase its support for good causes.
Last year, Midcounties donated more than £140,000 to more than 300 local charities and community groups. It says the new fund should see those numbers increase by many multiples, with members given new opportunities to select the causes they care about the most.
The new fund is being powered by a change to how Midcounties shares its profits. The first 1,000 points that members earn by shopping with the society will now go directly to the Community Impact Fund, with any further points going towards the member’s share of the profits dividend in the usual way.
To make it easier and more affordable for members to make ethical and sustainable choices when trading with Midcounties, they will earn more points every time they purchase own-brand products and services such as own-brand Fairtrade and Co-op Holidays.
Midcounties says it rolled out the changes following feedback from members on how they wanted to benefit from more instant rewards and share more of the society’s profits with local communities.
“Next year marks 180 years since the Rochdale Pioneers established the modern co-operative movement,” said CEO Phil Ponsonby, “and we have gone back to their founding principles, specifically the importance of member economic participation and concern for communities.
“Our members told us how important it is that every time they spend with us, they make good things happen. That’s why we’ve now made this connection even stronger, so every time a member buys their dinner at our food stores, books a holiday, makes a call or puts one of their children into one of our nurseries, a percentage of what they spend will go directly back to supporting the causes they most care about.
“Through our new Community Impact Fund, our new approach to sharing our profits and new ways to help members save more, we are delivering on our purpose to create a fairer, more sustainable and ethical future. We know that by doing good together we can create a brighter tomorrow.”
Midcounties operates the Your Co-op family of businesses, covering more than 230 Your Co-op Food stores across the West Midlands, Oxfordshire, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire. The Society also trade nationally through its Your Co-op Travel, Your Co-op Childcare, Your Co-op Energy and Your Co-op Broadband and Mobile businesses.